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Was the postWorld War II decolonization movement too rushed, especially in Africa' - Essay Example

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This essay focuses on the history of Africa and analyzes the decolonization process in Africa and other parts of the world as indicated in published works and research papers. Decolonization refers to the process of overturning or ending colonialism or establishment of governance as created by another country and the term refers to attaining of independence by colonies controlled by the foreign powers…
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Was the postWorld War II decolonization movement too rushed, especially in Africa'

Download file to see previous pages... India was completely free and given back to Indians and India became independent of British rule. By 1950, a wave in independence struggle and the need to be free was felt across colonies in Africa and this first began in Benin, where natives wanted to come out of European rule. Very soon, other African nations such as Kenya followed and by 1990, the whole African continent attained freedom from European rule (Hargreaves, 1988). The freedom movement in Africa could be compared with the freedom struggle in India although both could be generalized yet distinct features would be drawn.
Whereas in India, the decolonization process developed gradually and took many years and was well planned and carried out, the independence movement in Africa has been considered as rushed and unplanned that left unstable political scenarios and a vacuum in the region. The decolonization process in Africa was a rush for distribution of power and European nations remained apprehensive about the situation that also left Africa in a state of chaos. Following the devastation of World War, France, Britain and Germany, the major colonial powers could not retain their supremacy and control over colonies and nation states so independence from colonial rule was inevitable and showed first in the independence struggle of India. Although the entire African and Asian region followed the Indian example, Africa was not actually prepared to handle independence and chaos resulted from an attempt to end colonial rule almost abruptly. Liberia, Egypt and South Africa were already free nations and Morocco and Sudan also attained freedom. Benin and later Kenya were however places where initial uprisings took form following the Indian example. However the uprisings in Africa were bloody and not as peaceful as was in India as the European powers initially resisted such uprisings although later had to give in to Africa's demand for independence (Hargreaves, 1988).
However when independence in India was more organized, and political powers were distributed evenly, in Africa, chaos resulted with pullout of European powers and there was disruption in political and economic systems, no blueprint or political plan to run the nation states and the tribal and state boundaries were also arbitrary resulting in fights between tribal leaders. As traditions and customs formed an important part of African culture, the change in leadership brought about power struggle between tribal groups and African political leaders.
Yet Africa was struggling for its independence just as India did and despite its ill reputation for being a nation characterized by slave trade, it attained its freedom. Although there may be similarities with the freedom struggle in Asia, African nations were markedly showed more disrespect due to cultural attitudes of Europeans and the resistance in Africa was thus tough, forced, unplanned and all of a sudden. In fact some historians have considered the struggle for African independence as unplanned and done as an inspiration of Indian independence so without proper weighing of the advantages and disadvantages of such a struggle. This ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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